Most fashion blogs and articles I read are all about guides and tips for dressing UP.
Party dresses, how to frock-up for the festive season, office attire, how to spruce up your outfit from day to night in three easy steps, wedding guest 101’s etc.
I have no problem whatsoever dressing UP. That’s the easy part – throw on a tutu, some glitter, a blazer, a splash of bold lipstick and shove on some kind of ridiculous hat/ earrings/ cape/ taxidermy parrot and you’re set for whatever fabulous event life throws you.
There’s too many sparkly, bright, beautiful things in the world for dressing UP to be anything but a joy. My wardrobe is brimming with going out / work appropriate outfits that I struggle to keep up with, and get consistent wear from, because it’s all I want to buy.
Where I struggle is dressing DOWN.
Because when the day is done, or you’re just hanging around home at the weekend, you’re not gonna be in full tulle and velvet. I’m certainly not gonna pretend to you that I luxuriate around the house in feather trimmed satin gowns, with my hair in rollers, smoking long stemmed cigarettes like a Princess Margaret clone (as nice as that would be, and you know, it’s good to have #lifegoals).
What you wear in your downtime has got to be comfortable, practical, and versatile – I’m running errands, I’m napping, I’m walking the dog, I’m napping, I’m cooking and spilling things everywhere, I’m napping, I’m cleaning the house, and then I’m possibly napping some more.
When within the comfort of home, casual wear can just be a singlet and PJ pants. However, sadly, at some point I do need to leave the house – and that’s where I get stuck.
I’m not a pants/ trousers person. It’s not a body related thing, it’s a comfort thing. I just never have been. I hate zips, waistbands and tucking things in. I feel constricted and claustrophobic in them. Trousers are like socks for the legs and wow I really bloody hate socks too.
I also don’t wear leggings or track pants out of principle. I just can’t do it. I can be snooty about some things, for no good reason, just how I also don’t wear ugg boots or onesies. I blame the aspiring Princess Margaret in me for that. She’s a snooty cow and, look, everyone really loves her in the Crown.
If you don’t wear jeans, trackies, or leggings, there’s not a lot of options for semi-decent casual wear other than t shirt dresses, and in Winter I’ll wear cut-off jean shorts over black tights. But it’s summer here now – and that option won’t work. I want to show some leg and wear t-shirts and feel the breeze on my skin and not be a hot, sweaty, grumpy mess in my spare time.
So the other week, whilst on one of my late-night ASOS journeys I stumbled across this somewhat cool and cute dungaree dress in their increasingly vast and covetable Curve range.
As part of the current 90’s revival, dungarees are kinda everywhere right now. I haven’t really paid much attention to them since I don’t do pants/ jeans. Plus I grew up believing that dungarees are a cool-thin-girl thing, and I was never either of those things, so I left them to those cool-thin girls with their lipgloss and hanging out in the mall and watching Saved by the Bell or whatever it was that cool-thin-girls did.
But this particular item on ASOS grabbed my interest for it ticked a lot of the boxes of what I’m looking for in casual wear, primarily:
- Summer appropriate
- Shows leg
- Non constricting
- Can wear with t-shirts / long sleeved tops
- Can throw over togs for beach outings
- Hard wearing – no need to wash with every second wear
And practical things aside, I think the thing that appealed most was that it’s casual but it’s still ‘A Look’. A Cute Look! It’s the easiest thing to wear, but it forms a complete pulled together ensemble, which is why I usually wear dresses anyway. People sometimes think that dresses are fancy and A Lot of Effort, but they’re actually the laziest way of dressing.
I had my reservations about the fit and how it would look on, but took the risk and ordered it anyway – bless ASOS and their free returns policy – it makes these decisions so much easier to make, as there’s literally nothing to lose.
When the dungarees arrived, I was over the moon. The fit was as hoped – oversized and comfortable. I played it safe and took measurements to select my size and it worked out well.
Since the dungarees (Dungaskirt? Dungadress? IDK) arrived I’ve been on Christmas holiday, and I’ve worn them almost every day over the past week. I’ve done day-long road trips, stuck in hot cars, a family Xmas, beach walks and lazy days at home and I’m only growing to love them more each day.
For $70, I know I’m really going to get my moneys worth out of this piece, and that’s an incredible feeling for something that I was unsure about, and was a complete departure from my usual styles.
I wanted to build on that cute, fun, tomboy look, so picked up a couple of striped tees from AS Colour – you really can’t beat them for quality and price. I have also been popping enamel pins on the bib to liven it up. This one pictured, of a gin bottle (well, I’ve decided it’s a gin bottle) is by We Are Out of Office and you can get this, and many more, from the glorious Pepa Stationery at the Arts Centre. Throw on some sneakers and voila! You are now an extra from Empire Records!
The shorter length of skirt stops the oversized nature of the garment from feeling too frumpy, and I can attest that the bib is wonderful at catching every drop of spilled trifle and pavlova over Xmas, which really cuts down on the need to wash ones t-shirts. On cooler days I’ve been throwing one of my trusty Glassons merino long-sleeved tops underneath and it looks great. I’m also keen to give it a whirl with a plaid shirt for that real 1991 Seattle Girlfriend vibe.
If you’re on the fence about this style, but are like me, and have been after something a bit different to mix up your holiday / causal wear, I do urge you to give this look a go. Make the most of ASOS’s free returns and why not order in a bunch of things over the holidays when you have time to browse properly, and take measurements. I’ve also since spotted variations in the Warehouse and KMart, if you want to try one on first.
ASOS’s Curve range typically runs up to a AU/UK 28, which is a NZ 26, and right now they have a huge sale on – in fact on checking the link for this post, I see that this item is reduced to $61, but you gotta get in fast as ASOS stuff sells so fast and seldom restocks.
So go online! Browse! And why not order something a little out of your comfort zone for Summer?!
Sometimes that risk really pays off!
DUNGAREE DRESS: ASOS
T-SHIRT: AS Colour
ENAMEL PIN:We Are Out of Office via. Pepa Stationery